The Chosen, Chapter 2D

Wolf spoke as soon as the exterior door clanged shut – “What is it you want?”

“You are in no position to ask questions.” The New Frisarian stood outside her cell, just outside of her reach. “I am about to offer you a deal, Prisoner Three, and when this proposition is made, you will be able to respond in one of two ways.” He lifted his right hand up to head level, and lifted his index finger – “Yes” – then his middle finger – “No.” He lowered his hand. “It really is that simple.”

“What if – ”

“Tomorrow morning, you will be tried, found guilty, and executed. The only way to avoid that fate, is to accept my proposal.”

“Which – ”

“After your trial, you will be placed in my custody, and your place exchanged with one of my prisoners. A thoroughly nasty woman, murdered her own children – the world will be a better place without her. While she is being hanged, I will bring you to New Frisaria, where you will help us locate your former employer.”

Wolf blinked. “Yungen.”

“We are not pleased, at all, with the encroachment of his criminals into our territory. Philos, and its pathetic Safety Committee, have proven incompetent to stop him, so we must rely upon ourselves to bring him to justice. When we heard that the Safety Committee had somehow captured one of his top lieutenants, we saw an opportunity to gain inside knowledge of his operation.” He spread his arms wide. “Which brings me here today, to this lovely place.”

“And when Yungen’s brought to justice – ” Wolf walked up to the bars of her cell – “justice will then come to me.”

The magistrate’s face brightened. “Ah, you are intelligent! How charming. Until Yungen is captured, you will be in our prison – we’re not barbarians, your cell will be much nicer than here – and afterwards, we’ll send you to the penal colony.”

“So what you’re offering me, is a life of imprisonment.”

“Your only alternative, is death.”

From the exterior gate, Deputy Stenson called into the jail. “Jerdain – your time is done.”

“Very well.” The magistrate from New Frisaria, Jerdain, pointed at Wolf. “I will be outside the courthouse, as you are led to your trial tomorrow. Just say the word ‘yes’ to me at that time, and all else will be done.”

The exterior gate opened, and Jerdain disappeared from his site. Before the gate closed, Wolf called out to Deputy Stenson, who walked swiftly to her cell.

“The nobleman, from yesterday.” Wolf realized she had lowered her voice, and realized the folly of that decision. “I have reason to believe, he is an Imperial spy.”

Deputy Stenson laughed. “As do I! He was just in the constable’s office, telling us he was a Guardsman, and trying to have us turn you over to him!”

Wolf couldn’t hid the disappointment from her face. “I take it – you said no.” The deputy let out another laugh, and quickly exited the jail.


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